Want Raving Fans With An Author’s Email List?

Want Raving Fans With An Author’s Email List?


Email list of raving fans

An email list would have to be one of the most important assets of an author’s tool kit. As well, it would have to be a focal point of any author platform.

You’ve heard the saying, I’m sure, that  “The money is in the list”. An email list is a way of getting a group of raving fans.

The idea is to have an email list of followers with whom you can communicate. Communicating with these people on your list helps you to build your audience and you can establish relationships of mutual respect and trust.

Your followers want to hear from you, they want to learn from you, and they are happy to receive your emails. 

Permission for communication was given when they gave you their email address and if they don’t want to communicate with you they will unsubscribe. 


Why an email list?


With an email list, relationships are built and its members become your followers. As this author-audience relationship evolves it eventually becomes a relationship of trust.

The email list is about building your own audience – an audience that gets to like and trust you.

These are the people who become your raving fans. These are the ones who will buy your book.

When you release a new book you’ve already got a list of people excited to buy it.

Just imagine building a large audience, let’s say the list is 5,000 or 10,000. It’s a no-brainer – you’d just have to make sales, wouldn’t you think?



With an email list, you can build a list of reviewers. They become your review team. Whenever you release a new book you can tell the review team about your latest book.

You can source people who would be interested in joining your ARC (Advance Review Copy) team. These are readers who would like to receive an advanced copy of your book prior to its publication. 

Then when the book is published on Amazon they post a customer review.

Own your database


Even if you build large followings on social media you still need to build an email list that you own. The problem with having large lists on social media you don’t own those lists.

You can lose those followers. Social media accounts can be blocked or suspended and you can find that you have no access to your followers because you did not abide by their rules. You did not play their game and you’ve been relying on these platforms for your success.

As a priority, you need to direct your contacts to your email list, the list that you own.

Build an email list in 4 easy steps


To successfully build your email list you will need to invest in a few tools:

  1. Get a domain name
  2. Build an author’s website or landing page
  3. Select an autoresponder
  4. Put a Lead Magnet onto your website (that is, have something that will give people an incentive to give you their email address)

With your Lead Magnet, you collect email addresses and these go into your autoresponder. You then send out automated emails on a regular basis giving your audience real value. 

This way you keep your audience up-to-date with your latest book, or that book you are currently working on, or you will share fresh ideas or anything else that is relevant or of value to your people.

You as the author are in control of your marketing. You are not dependent on a Publisher’s distribution system, social media, or anything else.

Lead Magnets

Brainstorm incentives that you could offer people so that they will give you their email: 

  •       free chapter of your book
  •       free ebook
  •       a report
  •       an article
  •       checklist
  •       free online class
  •       webinar
  •       video

When should you start building your list? Start now. If possible start even before you’ve written your book.

Your takeaway?


  • Find an autoresponder that is right for you. When starting out the most popular one is Mailchimp. It’s a good place to start. And it’s FREE.  
  • Aweber is a low-cost autoresponder, there’s Get Response, ConvertKit and Active Campaign. I use Keap which is part of Infusionsoft.
  • Get a domain name and build a website or landing page
  • Offer a great incentive with your Lead magnet

Remember, the idea is to build an email list and to communicate with these people on a regular basis.  

Give them valuable content because if you don’t they will unsubscribe.

Don’t put off building your email list! It has proven to be one of the best assets authors can have when establishing a database of raving fans.

Coming soon is an online program of 52 weekly lessons on how to become a self-published author so watch this space. In the meantime learn more about self-publishing in my Free Online Class. 


Marji Hill

Author and Coach


Fast Self-Publishing Online

Are You Wondering What To Write About?

Are You Wondering What To Write About?



Are you wondering what to write about?

Are you racking your brains wondering what to write about? Are you struggling to come up with a good idea?

Do you want to write in a profitable niche?

You know that you need to write in a popular niche but you don’t know how to go about researching this?

A niche is a focused, targeted area that you serve particularly well. It is small and it’s specific.  When a buyer looks at it they can instantly connect to it, they can relate to it, and they can even say “That’s me. I’m in.”

Profitable niche

A profitable niche in the context of writing refers to producing a book in a niche market. There are so many niches you can pursue. You can start by examining a general, broad niche and then you can niche down and write a book in a very specific and defined niche. 

On Amazon, a niche is also known as a category.

The key to finding a profitable niche is to do some market research to identify a market that is popular with readers.

Here are some examples of broad, profitable niches:

  • health and fitness, weight loss
  • finance – how to get out of debt
  • relationships & dating – helping men for women find their ideal partner
  • personal development – how to be successful in business,  
  • self-help – how to meditate, how to de-stress
  • pets
  • technology
  • beauty and how to look young

Steps To Researching a Profitable Niche

Choose a broad niche that appeals to you.

Step 1

Visit the US Amazon website (amazon.com). In the Search Bar enter the name of your niche. You will see that the Pet niche gets over 70,000 results; Mindfulness gets over 30,000; health and fitness get over 100,000. These are all very big niches.

Step 2

Drill down to find a more specific niche. Check niches that interest you in Books and also in the Kindle Store. In Books, the Health & Fitness niche gets results of over 60,000. In the Kindle Store, there are over 50,000.

Step 3

If you examine the drop-down autosuggestions you will see different aspects of these niches. Explore these. Look at the weight loss niche. The autosuggestions suggest specific angles to weight loss like:

  • weight loss for women
  • weight loss and menopause
  • weight loss cookbook
  • weight loss hypnosis

Step 4

Become familiar with the books that are available in your niche. Identify the pain points, the problems and challenges your niche has. 

Think about what could be the biggest pain or problem this market is experiencing?

Is there a problem or a challenge that you can solve?

When doing your research keep at the front of your mind how your target audience could benefit from reading your book?  

Step 5

The book that you write should offer a benefit to your reader so that they will feel so compelled to read it that they will hit the buy button. 

At the end of the day, people buy things that they NEED.

Once you are comfortable with the niche market you’ve chosen you can then do more research.

Step 6

You want to find out if the topic you’ve chosen has the potential to make sales.

This process involves finding out if other books in your niche are selling because you want to put the odds in your favour.

Step 7

Two methods for doing this are keyword research and research into a book’s categories.

Keyword research and research into categories are fundamental elements for successfully publishing on Amazon.

As a self-publisher, your job when listing your book on the Amazon platform Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) is to give the right metadata to Amazon so that readers can find your book and so that you can make sales.

Being able to analyse profitable keywords and categories will help you with your market research because if you get this right, tweaking your metadata may result in hundreds of more visitors to your book’s detail page and this can equate to greater sales.

It’s an area of learning where over time you need to develop mastery and it requires a lot of hard work, experience and knowledge. 

You will need to learn the techniques for doing it and learn to analyse the results so that you will know in advance, before you even write your book, that your idea has some chance of being successful.

If you’d like access to more tips and advice tune into my free video Masterclass on writing and self-publishing in the Fast Self-Publishing Online community.



Fast Self-Publishing Online


Marji Hill

Author & Coach

How To Get Your Book Found In A Crowded Amazon Marketplace

How To Get Your Book Found In A Crowded Amazon Marketplace


Amazon categories for Kindle


You’ve created a book people will love, made an amazing cover, done your keyword research, written a persuasive description, and now as you enter 2021 and you are about to publish your book you’ll be up against millions of competitors, who are likely to outrank you on Amazon.

How will you ever be found in the crowded Amazon market place?

Having done all of the above there’s still something else you need to do. You need to place your book into appropriate categories.




What are categories and how do you find the best categories for your book?

First of all, categories are those sections of the Amazon website where customers can find your book. 

Imagine you are walking into a bookstore. Books are divided up into sections: fiction, history, adventure, cooking, children’s picture books, biographies, and so on.

Categories are the big broad terms that describe a book and they indicate where a book fits.

If a customer wants a book about how to get rid of skin blemishes and then finds it in the fiction section they will not be all that impressed and will probably not buy the book.

Learning how to find the right categories, just like selecting the best keywords, increases the chance of a book being found on Amazon.  If a book gets found on Amazon then it may convert to a sale.

Categories help readers find books they want to buy. The right categories increase a book’s conversion rate because they attract the ideal buyer.

If your book is featured in the wrong category, your ideal reader won’t be able to find it.  If readers can’t find it they can’t buy it. 


Two sorts of categories


Categories can be very confusing for newbie self-publishers. This is because there are two sorts of categories.


When you enter your book’s details on the KDP Bookshelf you are asked to select two relevant categories from the drop-down list.

These categories are called Bisac Codes (Book Industry Standards and Communications) and they are designed to help a reader find your book.

These BISAC codes are an industry-wide standard for classifying books and they are commonly used in libraries and bookstores. Amazon uses them. 

The BISAC Codes are a pathway for customers to follow and to find your book.

Amazon may also assign additional browse categories depending on your BISAC selections and assigned keywords.




The other categories are Amazon browse categories. In reality, Amazon allows up to ten categories for your book but when you are doing your book’s listing on KDP you will start with just two. 

You will select just 2 BISAC categories for your book’s listing and then after you publish your book you will need to contact Amazon and request the 10 browse categories you want.

The more categories you can put your book into the more eyeballs you can get on to your book’s sales page.


Best Seller Badge


If you select the right categories an author increases their chance of getting a “Best Seller” badge – that orange icon you sometimes see on a book’s listing.

The ideal game plan is to rank #1 in a category on Amazon so that you can get a Best Seller Badge.

This in turn will help you to increase your sales.

To get a Best Seller Badge you need to find out which categories are best for your book. If you list your book in a category that is not too competitive it may be easier to get a Best Seller Badge.


How to choose categories? 


  • Brainstorm the categories you think will apply to your book
  • Get ideas for categories when doing your keyword research.
  • When you are analysing ebooks and books listed for certain keywords take a note of the categories of books similar to yours.
  • You will see Categories listed under the Best Sellers Rank (BSR).

Browse amazon.com


  • Select Kindle Store
  • Then find Best Sellers & More
  • Select Kindle eBooks  
  • Under Kindle eBooks you’ll see a list of categories eg.
  • If your book is a positivity motivational self-help book you could select
  •       Self-help>Happiness
  •       Self-help>Personal transformation


Search for other categories that your book could fit into.

  • Select a category and examine the 100 best selling books in a category. Look at the book in the #1 position and then look at the book in #100. Identify books similar to yours.
  • Examine the BSR. Does a best selling book have a BSR of 100,000 or less? 
  • If the BSR is under #25,000 be assured that the book is selling well. The higher the BSR the less it sells and the lesser the competition.
  • The optimum position for your chosen Category is a BSR # 25,000-50,000. (Some say to consider books between #10,000 and #100,000.) 
  • Find a category where book #1 is under BSR #2500 and book #100 is between #25,000 and #50,000. 
  • This kind of analysis will give you a snapshot of the whole category and you can quickly determine whether or not a category is worth pursuing.
  • Sometimes in a category, it’s only the first book that is making money.  


Do your research. Make a list of relevant categories that could apply to your book.  

Select the best 10 categories and try to select ones with the least competition. It is easier to achieve a higher BSR if the competition is smaller.


How to change your categories


After you’ve published your book change your categories. Make the changes after logging into your KDP account.

Once you’ve found the browse categories you want, contact KDP on the Help page and in an email, put in a request to change your categories to the ones that you want.

When requesting a change in categories write them out according to the following format.

Kindle Store>Kindle eBooks>Education & Teaching>Teacher Resources>Curricula

Kindle Store>Kindle eBooks>Nonfiction>Politics & Social Sciences>

Social Sciences>Sociology>Race Relations


If you’d like access to more tips and advice tune into my free video Masterclass on writing and self-publishing in the Fast Self-Publishing Online community.



Fast Self-Publishing Online


Marji Hill

Author & Coach


Do You Want To Self-Publish Your Paperback In Australia?

Do You Want To Self-Publish Your Paperback In Australia?





Amazon’s domination of the world book market is one of its great attractions and many authors choose it as their preferred publishing platform.

Customers are there ready to buy and pay for books with their credit cards. With just a click, a Kindle eBook is delivered immediately to your Kindle or free Kindle app on your laptop, iPad or mobile device.

Amazon’s gigantic sales platform with its Expanded Distribution puts your book into global markets.  It is regarded as the standard for self-publishing books.

If you are an Australian and you have just published your first-ever book on Amazon you’ll find it’s a great place to start your career in self-publishing.

And you are desperately wanting to hold that paperback in your hand and glory in the excitement of having just published your first book.


The challenge


As a new author and self-publisher, it’s natural that you’ll want to market your brand in Australia. This being the case it will be in your interest to provide your followers with an additional path to purchase your books.

When you published your book on the Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) platform you would have selected Expanded Distribution. Then when you looked at your listing on Amazon Australia you would have noticed that your paperback was listed at a dreadfully, inflated price.

How will your readers in Australia ever buy your book?

This is serious and very off-putting for Australian authors and self-publishers.

Australian self-publishers do have a problem if they want to publish a paperback in Australia, be able to hold it physically in their hands, show it off to friends, and market it to other Australians.  

Ordering paperbacks from Amazon in Australia is expensive. It’s affected by the exchange rate, the GST and the freight. The cost is prohibitive.

I understand that this is tough for the Australian author and self-publisher.

This downside is that many Australians will decide that it is not in their interest to publish on Amazon.

But it’s not all gloom and doom. There is a way – another option that solves the problem.


Another option


As I said earlier one of the great benefits of publishing on Amazon is its domination of the world book market.  

Because of its Expanded Distribution, both paperbacks and eBooks have access to worldwide markets through Amazon distribution channels. 

As an Australian author and self-publisher, you do need focus on these global markets because in comparison the Australian market is small. Your books can be sold in the United States, the United Kingdom and many other countries.

However, this doesn’t satisfy that need for Australian self-publishers who want to be able to see, physically hold, and market their book to Australian readers.

Within the Australian self-publishing scene, Australian authors should focus on publishing and marketing Kindle eBooks. There is no issue with the selling Kindle eBooks in Australia using the Amazon platform.

The problem lies with publishing paperbacks.



Australians could think about publishing their paperback with Ingram Spark.

IngramSpark is one of the largest book wholesale distributors in the world and it can be used in conjunction with Amazon. IngramSpark and Amazon work in together as they have a collaborative relationship.

IngramSpark, like Amazon, has relationships with other countries and they help publishers get their books into the wholesale channels of these countries. Its global distribution is very broad.

You can use both IngramSpark and Amazon at the same time. However, you must have your own ISBN.

Not only that do not select KDP’s Expanded Distribution. If Expanded Distribution is selected this will cause a conflict with the ISBN when you upload your manuscript to your Ingram Spark account.

IngramSpark is very big in the United States distributing to Barnes & Noble, Apple, big chains, independent bookstores, libraries, schools and universities. They grant access to their global online and print distribution partners so that indie authors can have their titles distributed throughout the world.

They even distribute to Amazon.


KDP Expanded Distribution


Do not worry if your paperback is already in KDP’s Expanded Distribution.

You can remove your paperback from Expanded Distribution, set up an Ingram Spark account, contact their customer service team, and have your book transferred from Expanded Distribution to your IngramSpark account.

IngramSpark’s print facility is in Melbourne.  This means Australian self-publishers will save on shipping costs and your paperback (and even your hardback) will be more easily accessible to Australian customers.

To get over the problems of publishing in the Australian landscape publish on both platforms – both Amazon’s KDP and IngramSpark.  


Cutler, Robin 2018    IngramSpark vs Amazon KDP.

Lovell, S.G. Self-Publishing Paperbacks in Australia   


If you’d like access to tips and to the free Masterclass on writing and self-publishing, become part of the Fast Self-Publishing Online community.


Marji Hill

Author & Coach



Fast Self-Publishing Online


What Do I Need To Fix If My Book Isn’t Selling?

What Do I Need To Fix If My Book Isn’t Selling?


Not selling

  1. Unprofitable niche

Here’s the thing: you may be an excellent writer and you’ve created a manuscript. But is the topic you’ve chosen to write about something that other people have some interest in?

If there is not much interest in your subject matter then your book won’t sell. But your motivation to self-publish may have nothing to do with money; in which case choosing an in-demand niche may not be relevant.

However, given that most writers love it when their books sell then selecting a niche that you know already has a proven market is the way to go. Getting this right is essential.

Your takeaway: if you have already published your book in a niche for which there is no demand and you are disappointed that your book is not selling then do proper market research for your next book. You need to write in a niche you know that has a market.

It is only by making mistakes that you learn.

 2. Book cover

You’ve heard the phrase that readers judge a book by its cover.  Buying decisions are frequently made on how a cover looks, and it is the cover that can make or break your book.

The look of the book – the cover – is the first thing a reader sees.  In a crowded and competitive market place, it is your cover that will help your book stand out.  

Book covers help readers discover your book and so can stimulate sales. Covers need to be: appealing, arouse curiosity, capture attention and be engaging.


They set the tone helping your target audience to take notice.


Takeaway: If your cover is not working for you then change it. Keep testing until it works for you.


3. Book description


Have you a compelling description?

A good description helps the reader make an emotional connection to your book so that they really feel that they need to read it. So ask yourself, is your description taking the reader on a journey from where they are currently at to what could be a new and better place? In other words, will the reader experience a transformation as a result of reading the book?. 

Re-examine your book’s description which you’ll find on the Amazon listing page. Is it compelling? Is the description likely to influence a reader to make a buying decision?

Does it have a powerful or grabbing opening sentence that hooks the reader in? Are there three or five bullet points outlining the benefits a reader will get from reading the book?  And is the description offering the reader some outcomes that will result from reading the book?

Takeaway: Do a critical analysis of your book’s description and get some feedback from others as well. Return to your KDP book listing and revise your book’s description

 4. Keyword selection


Keywords help your book to get discovered so that it has some chance of selling. To put the odds in your favour go to the Amazon search bar to do your research and you’ll find plenty of keyword strings in the drop-down menu.

The keywords you see in the drop-down – the autosuggestions -are the most actively used search terms. This means you can be sure that they are terms and phrases that people are searching for on Amazon so you may consider using them in your metadata.

Select profitable, low competition keywords for your title, sub-title and the seven keyword slots in your book’s listing.

Publisher Rocket is a useful piece of software that helps you with your keyword and category research.  

Think about your keywords as they are just so important. Don’t limit them to a single word; you’ll do better to use keyword phrases and fill all seven keyword slots.

Takeaway: Regularly revisit your book’s listing on KDP and review your keyword selection. By doing further keyword research you can improve and keep testing them.

5. Have Amazon put your book into the right categories


To make sure you find the most relevant and useful categories for your book, do category research. When you have chosen 10 categories contact Amazon and send them an email requesting the categories.

Amazon usually responds within about 24 – 48 hours.

Categories like keywords are just so important for your book’s discoverability.  You need to understand how to put your book into appropriate categories to help your book to be found.

Categories help readers find books they might like to buy

Categories, if they are the right ones, will increase your conversion rates because they attract the ideal buyer.

Readers won’t be able to discover your book if it has been put in an inappropriate category.


Takeaway: Review the categories you have for your book, and then do further research. Select categories that will work more in your favour.

 6. Errors


Once your eBook and paperback have been published check it for errors. If you find mistakes revise the manuscript to remove them.

Takeaway: If you find mistakes in the published version of your book revise the manuscript to fix the errors.


One of the great benefits of publishing on Amazon is that once your book is published you can return to its listing in KDP to revise it. Mistakes can be fixed and your metadata can be improved.

Through a process of testing you the self-publisher can have a better cover, create a compelling description, discover profitable keywords, select more appropriate categories, and rectify any mistakes.


Invitation to book a Discovery Call


You are invited to book a special Discovery Call with me

Step 1 – Special Offer

Marji Hill

Author & Coach

10 Tips On How To Write A Blurb For The Back Cover

10 Tips On How To Write A Blurb For The Back Cover


Back cover blurb

What is it that influences a reader to buy a book? On Amazon, a reader will look at the description that’s posted on the book’s detail page or they will flip to the back of the book and read the blurb about the book.

The purpose of the blurb, that brief description found on a book’s back cover, is to entice readers to purchase your book.




But what about Kindle ebooks? Do you need a blurb for the back cover?

When a reader looks at a paperback they glance at the cover and title and then they turn the book over and look at the back cover. So the focus is on cover design not only for the front cover but also for the back cover so there needs to be a blurb to capture the reader’s attention.

On the internet, however, readers go to the Amazon book’s listing page to find out more about the book. There they see the book’s description, the price, information about the author, reviews and so on. So the listing page or the sales page takes the place of the back cover blurb.

For Kindle ebooks, then, the blurb is the description that you see on the eBook’s purchasing page.

Unlike physical, print books, Kindle ebooks have no spine and no back cover; they have dynamic layouts formatted with reflowable text.

While you could put an image of the back cover into the Kindle ebook manuscript most publishers do not bother with a blurb on the back cover.

It’s the description on the ebook’s detail page that functions as a blurb.




Before you start writing a blurb do some analysis of other bestselling books in your niche. Select 3-5 bestselling books and examine the way their books descriptions have been done.

Build up a file of book descriptions and blurbs so that you’ve got a reference point from which to develop your own book description and blurb writing skills.

Crafting a blurb for the back cover is a marketing exercise.  The focus needs to be all about the prospective customer and meeting their needs and expectations.

Its main purpose is to highlight the reasons your readers should purchase your book right now; it’s not about giving them an abstract or a synopsis of all that they can find inside the book.




A back cover blurb for a non-fiction book should:


1. provide a hook to get the reader in

2. have an attention-grabbing opening line 

  • which could be a question, 
  • address a reader’s problem,
  • make a promise
  • testimonial
  • statement from a review

3. it should be short    approximately 100-250 words

4. written in the third person

5. be punchy and interesting


[Title] is the self-help book for those wanting to have a better life but who don’t want to end up broke and down and out

6. appeal to the specific interests of your target market

7. Demonstrate the benefit that readers will get out of your book

8. have 3-5 bullet points


In this entertaining how-to guide … [author] provides  10 short, succinct chapters which will help you to:

  • Identify and change the self-sabotaging beliefs and behaviours that stop you from getting what you want.
  • Create a life you’ll totally love.  
  • Generate an income of the magnitude you’ve never experienced

9. Tell the readers what they’ll take away as a result of reading the book



By the end of [the title], you’ll understand why you are how you are, how to love what you can’t change, and how to create the life and income you’ve always wanted


10. Include, if possible, some kind of positive endorsement from a distinguished person but don’t stress if you can’t.

Writing a good blurb can be easy once you get the hang of these tips. Start collecting some of your favourite blurb examples and then incorporate these ideas into creating your own.

If you’d like to book a complimentary call with me visit www.fastselfpublishingonline.com to access the FREE ONLINE CLASS. At the end of the class click on the link to schedule a call with me.


Marji Hill

Author & Coach

5 Ways To Sharpen Your Self-Publishing Skills

5 Ways To Sharpen Your Self-Publishing Skills


Sharpen your skills

Take time as an author to sharpen the skills, the tools, and your resources if it is your intention to be more productive.

Do this if your desire is to develop a career as an author and publisher. In which case, you will want to publish many books.

Publishing a book on Amazon is relatively easy and it is fast. However, mastering all the bits to create a successful publication can be challenging. 

In the self-publishing process, there are many moving parts and you have to get all the bits working in unison. To master this, keep sharpening your skills, keep on learning, and keep on testing.

It is what makes the difference between successful people and very successful people, and the more you do it the easier it becomes. 

The fastest way to become skilled at Amazon publishing is to produce multiple books. It’s by producing multiple books and learning what works and what doesn’t work that you develop the mastery.

You may be thinking how is it even possible to produce multiple books fast. Would I be right? 

Here are several ways to speed up the production of multiple books and to master the skills necessary to do this.




Many authors outsource the writing of their books.

They set themselves up as a business and their purpose is to publish lots of books. One of the sites where they can outsource their writing is Upwork.  

In other words, authors can employ ghostwriters to create their books. Once the content is drafted they can massage the text to suit themselves, put their name or a pen name to it, and work on getting the metadata right in readiness for publication.

The self-publisher puts their energies into creating a title and sub-title, does extensive keyword research, selects the best categories, and writes a compelling book’s description.




Another method to produce books fast is to create low content books: journals, notebooks, daily and weekly planners, bullet journals, guest books, prompt books, colouring books, trackers, and activity books.  

Passive income can be generated by publishing low-content books. Once you hit upon a profitable idea, low-content books take very little time to produce. 

It’s possible to go from developing an idea to publication and then to sales literally within the space of a few days.

Once the formula is established you publish and then rinse and repeat.




A key to success and to generate recurring income is to do your due diligence before you even create your book. So whether you outsource the writing so that you can produce multiple books or get into the production of low-content books the very first step is market research.

Before you create the next book validate the idea.

  1. Find a category that is low competition and with good cash flow potential. 
  2. Do keyword research to find profitable keywords with low competition
  3. Draft a working title and sub-title
  4. Draft the book’s description
  5. Study bestselling books in your niche and analyse to see what they have in common?   
  6. Come up with an idea that is a little bit different from the competition




Do research in advance of creating a publication and study the bestsellers. Take note of what’s working.

Find out what readers love.

The ultimate goal is to create a book that readers are already looking for. Validate your idea so that you give your book the best chance to make sales before you spend any time creating it. 

It is all too common for authors to create their book first and to create a book that they want to make instead of creating a book that other people want to buy. Creating a book first so often results in ZERO sales.

Once you have validated your idea and completed the due diligence proceed with creating your book.

Put the odds in your favour of being successful.

All of this, of course, requires practice. 

Just publishing one book will not help you to develop the skills necessary to be successful.




Become a producer of many books.

The more books you publish the more skilled you will become.

Build a team around you of experts: editors, ghostwriters, formatting specialists, designers. By outsourcing, you will get things done faster and you will be better able to leverage your time.

Keep sharpening your skills, keep learning, keep testing. The more you do it the easier it all becomes.

If you’d like access to tips and to the free Masterclass on writing and self-publishing, become part of the Fast Self-Publishing Online community.


Marji Hill

Author & Coach



Fast Self-Publishing Online

Do You Use A Pen Name?

Do You Use A Pen Name?


Pen names

As an author do you write under your own name or do you use a pen name? Pen names are also known as pseudonyms or non de plumes?

Many authors use a different name when they write and publish their books. There are good reasons for doing this and there is nothing illegal about it.

This trend has already been established by many famous authors.

Famous authors


  • Mark Twain’s real name was Samuel Langhorne Clemens.
  • George Orwell’s real name was Eric Arthur Blair.
  • JK Rowling’s real name is Joanne Rowling.  Because she has also been writing crime novels Rowling has another pen name: Robert Galbraith.
  • Lewis Carroll was Charles Lutwidge Dodgson.

Why use a pen name?


Why write your books under another name? Here are some reasons authors do this. 

1. A leading professional may want a pen name to separate their professional identity from what they do in their personal life.

2.  A high profile lawyer may choose a pen name for his/her romance novels so as to not confuse the clients or have them know what they do privately.

3. You wouldn’t want to write under your legal name if it was the same as or too close to someone famous.

4. So as not to confuse the readers an author may select different pen names for different genres. If you write mystery novels and self-help books it would be best to write under different names.

5. Your real name may not suit your genre.

6. You could choose a pen name to suit your branding.

7. If your legal name is too long, complex, difficult to pronounce, or hard to remember it would be sensible to have a pen name.

As you can see authors can easily justify writing under another name. I know one writer who has 40 different pen names.



Before rushing out to choose a pen name think first. Consider the marketing value of the name you choose.

Think about your pen name and decide if it is:

  • a suitable domain name for a website?
  • good for social media profiles?
  • how does it look on a book cover?
  • easy to remember? 
  • suit your genre?
  • good for your branding?


Setting up an Amazon account


When setting up an Amazon account, an author will use their legal name but when listing a book an author can use whatever name they like. Authors can have multiple pen names under the one account.

Author Central, however, only allows an author to use three names.


Choosing a pen name


If you need help choosing a pen name there are pen name generators. Just Google them.

Sometimes it’s not appropriate to have a pen name. If you are an authority in your niche you will not want to have a different identity.

Nonfiction writers are often experts: teachers, speakers, academics. Their market wants to know who they are and how they developed their expertise. 

Beware having too many pen names


Do not fall into the trap of having so many pen names that you cannot market yourself properly. 

Marketing multiple pen names with multiple social media accounts and websites is a big headache. Keep it simple.

Finally, use a pen name when there’s a very good reason to do so and think very carefully before you decide to jump in and write under a pen name.

For access to regular weekly training and tips on how to self-publish your book on Amazon join the Facebook community – Fast Self-Publishing Online.


Fast Self-Publishing Online

Marji Hill

Author and coach 


How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon

How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon


How to optimise your book's listing on Amazon

You’ve prepared your manuscript and you’ve decided that you’ll publish it on Amazon.

You’ve completed the finishing touches to your manuscript; it’s been edited and formatted; you’ve uploaded the manuscript and cover to KDP; and, and you believe you’ve crafted a great title. 

So if you:


  • Have arrived at that moment and you are actually ready to publish your book and to launch it out there into the big wide world, and you
  • Are listing all the details pertaining to your book which Amazon will use to create your book’s detail page. However, you are feeling somewhat nervous, a bit scared, and worried you might mess up? 
  • Feel that the listing process is easy and fast, and you know that you probably can have your book ready to publish within minutes. Yes?
  • But someone has made the comment that if you want to join the ranks of thousands of other authors who have failed at self-publishing on Amazon and who have not made sales and who say that self-publishing on Amazon doesn’t work your confidence has been shaken. Right?
  • Have heard that as a self-publisher your job when listing your book is to give the right metadata to Amazon to help readers find your book and so that you can make sales. However, you lack faith in your ability to go it alone and you don’t really understand the best practices needed to tweak the listing.

If any of the above describes you then I urge you to secure your program:  How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon.


So, who am I to be sharing this information with you?

My career


I began my career in the book industry when I started off as a teacher-librarian in a top Queensland school, and then later I trained hundreds of other teacher-librarians for the Queensland Department of Education.

My writing career commenced over 30 years ago when I started writing non-fiction books for children and young adults.

Since then I’ve written over 65 books most of them having been published by mainstream publishers. In 2014 I entered the online space and discovered Amazon. Not only did I sell physical products on Amazon I started self-publishing on Amazon. 

I’ve also had 30 years of experience in marketing. As well as being very active in the direct sales industry I learned the value of the new way to publish, the alternative way to publish, with the advent of the internet. I learnt to blog, build websites, to do affiliate marketing, list building, automation and much more. 

Given everything I’ve learned, I now help others achieve the results they desire as writers, self-publishers, and marketers.

As a result of years of training and experience, I’ve learnt what works and what doesn’t.

The solution


Thanks to the How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon you will be able to:

  1. Get your book discovered on Amazon and start to make sales
  2. Research the metadata so that even before you start writing your book it has some chance of being successful
  3. Learn the steps for getting a Best Seller badge
  4. Learn about tools to speed up your success  
  5. Understand the fundamentals of becoming an Amazon bestseller

Take those first steps to self-publish your book on Amazon and reach millions of readers worldwide.

This home study program is just the beginning of your journey. By mastering the steps outlined in How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon you will be able to build from here learning more of the ways about what you have to do to have your book discovered on Amazon and start to earn royalties.

Thanks to the How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon you will be able to:

  • Experience the ecstasy of having your first book published, a dream come true
  • Realise the potential you’ve now created for future income opportunities
  • Celebrate and enjoy that sense of empowerment because of your self-publishing achievement
  • Finally, being able to unlock your true potential as a self-publisher and make your dent in the world?

With How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon you’ll be able to leverage the exploding trend of doing things your own way by securing access to your home study program at the heavily discounted price of only $47.

And to make your decision a complete no-brainer, you also have my 100% no-questions-asked, 30-day money-back guarantee.


If How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon home study program is not exactly what you’re looking for, you don’t pay anything. I will personally refund your full investment.

So you’ve got absolutely nothing to lose. The risk is completely on me.

Access the program


To access the program right now CLICK HERE


With How To Optimise Your Book’s Listing on Amazon you’ll be able to leverage the exploding trend of doing things your own way by securing access to your home study program at the heavily discounted price of only $47.

And when you “Access The Program” right now you get it for the special launch price of just $47.

PLUS to reward you for taking action I’m also including an amazing bonus.   

  • Be part of a special coaching session with me where you can get all your questions answered (value around $500) 

And remember, if for any reason it’s not exactly what you’re after, you’re protected by our 100% 30-day money-back guarantee.

Imagine a few years into the future and you look back on the start of your self-publishing journey and realise that this was your beginning.




Marji Hill

Author and Coach

Do You Want To Profit From Self-Publishing Your Book?

Do You Want To Profit From Self-Publishing Your Book?



Profit from your book


You’ve prepared your manuscript for publication and you’ve decided that you’ll publish it on Amazon.

The finishing touches to your manuscript have been completed; it’s been edited and formatted; it has a stunning cover; and, and it’s got a great title. 

Now that moment has finally arrived. You are ready to actually publish your book and to launch it out into the big wide Amazon world.


Listing process 


Before you hit the Publish button you must start the listing process into the Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) submission form.

As you list all the details pertaining to your book you are asked to provide information that describes your book. This information is used to create your book’s detail page on Amazon.

This information is known as metadata.

The listing process appears to be easy, and it is fast too, so you’ll have your book ready to publish within minutes.

But be ready for that moment of panic because it’s time to hit the Publish button.

But before you do, let me ask this question: do you want to join the ranks of thousands of authors who fail at self-publishing on Amazon and who do not make sales and who then complain that self-publishing on Amazon doesn’t work?

You are wrong if you think that you can simply hit the Publish button and become successful. You can’t just publish, hold your breath, and wait to see what happens.

This is where so many newbie self-publishers make the mistake thinking that they can quickly complete all the fields for entering the details of their book and then hit the Publish button. Yes, it is so easy to publish your book.

I’ve done that too and made that same mistake.


Learning to select the right metadata


As a self-publisher, your job when listing your book is to give the right metadata to Amazon and to help readers find your book so that you can make sales.

Metadata includes such things as title, keywords, categories, book’s description, price, author name, cover, reviews and so on.

As a self-publisher you have to optimise your metadata and doing this can be confusing even for the experienced.

Making simple choices and tweaking your metadata can result in hundreds of visitors to your book’s detail page and this can equate to more sales.

Crafting a title and sub-title, choosing the right categories and keywords, writing and formatting your book’s description – these things are fundamental to marketing your book on Amazon.

If your metadata has not been optimised you risk being lost forever in the Amazon system. Metadata that is accurate and that has been optimised for the Amazon algorithm is how readers are able to find what they are searching for. 

If your metadata is not strong and it hasn’t been optimised your book won’t be found.  If it is not discovered it won’t sell.

Keyword research


Like it or not, doing your keyword research to find the best keywords and selecting the right categories can make or break your book. One of the ways to accomplish this is by completing the keyword and category fields.

You need to think about categories and decide which categories readers might browse to find your book. Your book has to be positioned accurately. 

While in the listing you are asked to select two categories you can actually select another eight.

Choosing the right categories


Choosing the right categories takes considerable research. This is so important because categories influence whether or not your book becomes a best seller.

Like categories, keywords are just so important too. Again they can make or break your book.

In keyword research, you need to choose keywords with low competition and the way you discover this is to have a keyword with high search volume and a low number of search results.

Get your metadata right and Amazon will drive thousands of new customers to buy your product.  Get it wrong and Amazon will relegate you and your book to obscurity.

Amazon gives priority to books that sell.

In conclusion, the struggle is about turning what you write into something that makes a profit and this is where you must develop mastery.

For access to regular weekly training and tips on how to self-publish your book on Amazon join the Facebook community – Fast Self-Publishing Online.


Fast Self-Publishing Online

Marji Hill

Author and Coach

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